RHABDOMYOSARCOMA is a tumor histologically characterized by the presence of the strap- and racquet-shaped cells, in which it is sometimes possible in good preparations to demonstrate cross striations and longitudinal myofibrils, and by giant cells with peripherally arranged vacuoles, causing the cell to resemble a spider or a spider's web. The cytoplasm of all these cells is more or less acidophilic. Grossly the tumors are found in or adjacent to striated muscles in various parts of the body, but most commonly in the thigh and leg.
Grossly, the tumor tissue varies greatly in its hardness because of the great variations in the amount of collagen in it. Generally it is rather soft, somewhat reddish, and may be mottled with various tints of red and cream from hemorrhage and necrosis. It is often circumscribed but always infiltrates surrounding tissues, although it is not always possible grossly to demonstrate this.
DENISON WC. INTRATHORACIC RHABDOMYOSARCOMA. AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1954;60(6):711–717. doi:10.1001/archotol.1954.00720010729005